Northern Virginia lawyer files suit to get Gingrich on Virginia ballot

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A Northern Virginia lawyer and Republican activist filed a lawsuit in state court on Thursday in an attempt to get former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on the state’s March 6 presidential primary ballot.

Jonathon A. Moseley’s suit, filed in Richmond City Circuit Court, is the latest drama surrounding the Republican primary ballot in the state. Thursday morning, a federal judge set a Jan. 13 hearing date for Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s bid to get on the ballot after the Republican candidate filed an emergency order on Wednesday.

Neither Mr. Gingrich nor Mr. Perry gathered the 10,000 valid ballot signatures necessary to qualify, leaving former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Texas Rep. Ron Paul as the only two candidates on the ballot.

While the lawsuit filed Thursday is independent of Mr. Gingrich’s campaign, Mr. Moseley has been trying to get them to join it, he said late Thursday.

The lawsuit alleges that Mr. Gingrich submitted over 11,000 signatures to fully satisfy the requirement, but “a great many” of them were improperly counted as invalid. At a stop in Iowa Wednesday, Mr. Gingrich said a worker the campaign hired to collect signatures committed fraud, leaving him short of the necessary 10,000 to qualify for the ballot.

Mr. Moseley said that he signed ballot petitions for both Mr. Gingrich and Mr. Perry and the form does not leave much room to write in one’s address, leading him to suspect that many addresses were crammed in and rendered illegible. The suit alleges that the majority of the petition signatures for Mr. Gingrich were disqualified “on the basis of a missing or illegible or incomplete address being provided with the signature.”

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